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Commerce Secretary Gary Locke Congratulates Boeing, Copa Airlines for Aircraft Deal

Monday, November 29, 2010

$1.7 billion sale will support thousands of U.S. jobs

Commerce Secretary Gary Locke delivered remarks today at a signing ceremony of a $1.7 billion contract between Boeing and Panama’s Copa Airlines.  Boeing will deliver twenty-two 737-800 aircrafts to Copa with an option for Copa to purchase 10 additional planes. This contract will support approximately 12,000 U.S. jobs, underscoring the impact of President Obama’s National Export Initiative—creating jobs at home by selling American products abroad.

Below is Secretary Locke’s statement:

“I would like to congratulate Boeing and Copa Airlines on this deal. The longstanding Boeing Company-Copa Airlines trading relationship is a textbook example of how mutually beneficial trade works. This $1.7 billion sale of 22 Boeing 737s is a good deal not just for Boeing or Copa Airlines.  It is a good deal for the thousands of people in the U.S. who make the parts and assemble the airplanes and the people in Panama who operate the airlines. As we continue to grow our economy in the U.S., sales likes these will help us reach President Obama’s National Export Initiative goal of doubling exports by 2015 and creating several million new jobs.”

Secretary Locke was joined by Panama’s Vice President Juan Carlos Varela, as well as Under Secretary for International Trade Francisco Sánchez and Washington Congressmen Dave Reichert and Jim McDermott, in congratulating the CEO of Boeing and Copa on sealing this mutually beneficial trade deal.  

With this sale, Copa will have purchased 55 aircrafts from Boeing to be delivered in the next four years.  The U.S. aerospace industry, which supports more than 1.5 million workers, has produced a trade surplus of $31.7 billion for the first 9 months of 2010, one of the largest among manufacturing sectors.  

The United States and Panama enjoy a close economic relationship, with more than $4.6 billion worth of bilateral trade activities through September of this year.